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30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon

04.28.17

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30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
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  • The view from the Women's Forum State Scenic Viewpoint looking toward the Crown Point Vista House.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Cape Horn Loop Trail: View of the Columbia River Gorge from Nancy Russel Overlook.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Multnomah Falls and Benson Bridge.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Pacific Crest Falls.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Ramona Falls.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Snow-covered Mount Hood from Zigzag Mountain. - 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • The entrance to Snow Dragon, one of the three caves making up the Sandy Glacier Caves network.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Skiing Mount Hood's west rim descent on the summer solstice.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Sunrise on Illumination Rock near Mount Hood's summit.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Mount Jefferson as viewed from the Timberline Ski Area.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Painted Hills Reservoir.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • View looking west from the Painted Hills Overlook Trail.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Painted Hills.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Smith Rock State Park.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Smith Rock State Park Panorama.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Aerial photo of the Three Sisters Wilderness.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • The Three Sisters and Broken Top (9,177 ft) from Tumalo Mountain.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Broken Top Crater.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Looking east across a frozen Crater Lake.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • The trail drops into the pictured creek drainage from the top of Juniper Ridge in the Honeycombs.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • The north side of the Honeycombs offers great opportunities for day hikes.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Mount Hood (11,249 ft) looking southeast across Lost Lake.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • View from the Watchman Overlook at Crater Lake National Park.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • View of Wizard Island from the Watchman Overlook at Crater Lake National Park.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Vidae Falls.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Vibrant sunset from the Discovery Point Trail in Crater Lake National Park.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • A mellow paddle on the Clackamas River.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Working through a Class III rapid on the Clackamas.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • View to the south over Mount Bachelor (9,068 ft).- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • An alpine pool in the Three Sisters Wilderness.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Worth stopping at Moraine Lake in the Three Sisters Wilderness to take in the pristine reflection.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Middle and North Sister viewed from the South Sister.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • White River Falls.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • White River Falls from above.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • A winding road near Cooks Chasm.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Spouting Horn at Cooks Chasm with Cape Perpetua in the background.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Good Fortune Cove.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Cooks Chasm.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • View south toward Cannon Beach from Ecola State Park's southern day use area.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Ecola State Park's Indian Beach.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Cape Perpetua: View south toward Heceta Head.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Cape Perpetua: Civilian Conservation Corps shelter.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • View south from the Cape Perpetua Lookout.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • A view down the river chasm from the narrowest point at the Rogue Gorge..- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • A view upstream to the magnificent main falls at the Rogue Gorge.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Punchbowl Falls.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Crossover Falls, just above Tunnel Falls.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Low flow during some autumns allows for a more accessible view of Punchbowl Falls.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Relax in a heated perch with an excellent view of the North Umpqua River.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • A view downstream from the line of terraced pools.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • East Lake Hot Springs.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Tilly Jane A-Frame.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
  • Sleeping bunk upstairs in the Tilly Jane A-Frame.- 30 Must-Do Adventures in Oregon
Article
Contributor

Oregon State is an untamed tangle of ecology and natural beauty. Sometimes, driving through the state can feel surreal: One moment, your car is kicking up dust in the high desert, the next, the windshield is dotted with dew within a towering, misty, old-growth forest. 

From the subarctic climate atop behemoth glacier-clad volcanoes to the shockingly vibrant high desert that sprawls eastward beyond the Cascades, Oregon is a study in beauty and variety. It is renowned as one of the country's best outdoor playgrounds, and for good reason: World-class steelhead and trout fishermen, mountaineers, skiiers, kite boarders, and whitewater kayakers all call Oregon home. That's not to mention that Smith Rock State Park is a seminal location for modern sport climbing as we know it. 

Whether you're an extreme athlete or simply looking for a breath of fresh air with a stunning backdrop, Oregon delivers. Millions flock annually to the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area for a peek at one of its 25 waterfalls and to Crater Lake, the deepest in the United States. Fewer are aware, though, of the natural wonders peppered among The Honeycombs along the Owyhee Plateau or the shocking colors of The Painted Hills.

Even the most prolific adventurer could tucker herself out attempting to overturn every natural curiosity within this expansive state. Below is a less-than-exhaustive starter pack. Please bear in mind that there are a number of adventures on this list that require a specific skill set or professional guides. Always assess your own abilities before embarking beyond the trailhead or the put-in.

Mountains

1. Mount Hood Wilderness

2. Three Sisters Wilderness

3. South Sister Hike

4. Diamond Peak

Overnights

5. Tilly Jane A-Frame

6. Warner Mountain Lookout Tower

Lakes

7. Crater Lake, Wallowas

8. Lost Lake

9. Crater Lake National Park

Rivers/Waterfalls

10. Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area

11. The Clackamas

12. The John Day

13. The Rogue

14. The Deschutes

15. Eagle Creek to Tunnel Falls

16. White River Falls State Park

17. Sahalie Falls

18. Multnomah Falls

Hot Springs

19. Umpqua Hot Springs

20. East Lake Hot Springs

21. Hart Mountain Hot Springs

Deserts

22. Alvord Desert

23. Painted Hills Unit

24. Smith Rock State Park

25. The Honeycombs

Beaches

26. Thor's Well + Cook's Chasm

27. Cape Perpetua Scenic Area

28. Ecola State Park

29. Seal Rock State Recreation Site

City Adventures

30. Forest Park

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